Tiktok was the most downloaded app in 2021. It has more than one billion monthly active users. And the #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt hashtag has more than 4.1 billion views.
According to TikTok’s “What’s Next” report from Feb 2022, 67% of TikTok users say the platform inspired them to shop even when they weren’t looking to do so. Livestream selling on TikTok seems inevitable. And we had previously wrote about 2 ways to sell live on TikTok.
But it’s still early days of Tiktok livestream selling. Brands are measuring success of their TikTok lives in terms of engagements (comments, likes and follows) and not sales. Products that are highly demonstrable like these cosmetics seem to do well. Anything that involves a "big reveal" also do well. Here are some examples:
- https://www.tiktok.com/@pearlsrx - you can buy an oyster and they will pry it open during the live to unveil the pearls you just bought
- https://www.tiktok.com/@blirrianceshop - you buy a "scoop" of little plastic toys and the host reveals what you won
- https://www.tiktok.com/@pullinghitters - shoppers buy a pack of cards and the host unwraps the pack to reveal your cards
- https://www.tiktok.com/tag/ringbombs - these "ring bomb" parties let shoppers buy a mystery box that the host fizzes to reveal the rings that were bought
These examples show that there's a lot of experimentation and only esoteric products are being sold by these early adopters. We don't see a lot of apparel, jewelry, food, or other products that we typically see in Facebook lives.
TikTok partnered with Shopify last year and launched in-app purchasing capabilities in certain markets (this is the "yellow cart" method described in our article about 2 ways to sell live on TikTok). Merchants can either sell directly on TikTok in a native shopping experience where product management, shipping, billing, purchasing, and returns all take place directly on the platform, or they can use partner integrations to handle certain parts of the checkout and post-payment process outside of the app.
TikTok is also doing a lot of good work to help livestreamers with features like moderating comments, muting certain viewers, banning certain words, assigning live moderators, and suggesting “thoughtful comments”:
There’s a misconception that TikTok is only used by younger generations, but only 70% of TikTok users are under 35. So 30% of users are NOT millenials or Gen-Z. And within a few years, there may be as many TikTok live sellers as there are FB Live sellers today.